Worth a Look: Book Reviews on Poisons, Toxicity, Trash, & True Cost

00 Remixed Review Lists, Capitalism (Good & Bad), Crime (Corporate), Economics, Environment (Problems), Misinformation & Propaganda, Nature, Diet, Memetics, Design, Science & Politics of Science, Secession & Nullification, Survival & Sustainment, Threats (Emerging & Perennial), True Cost & Toxicity, Water, Energy, Oil, Scarcity, Worth A Look

Poisons, Toxicity, Trash, & True Cost

Review: A Consumer’s Dictionary of Household, Yard and Office Chemicals: Complete Information About Harmful and Desirable Chemicals Found in Everyday Home Products, Yard Poisons, and Office Polluters

Review: High Tech Trash–Digital Devices, Hidden Toxics, and Human Health

Review: Made to Break–Technology and Obsolescence in America

Review: Pandora’s Poison–Chlorine, Health, and a New Environmental Strategy (Paperback)

Review: The Blue Death–Disease, Disaster, and the Water We Drink

Review: The Omnivore’s Dilemma–A Natural History of Four Meals

Review: The True Cost of Low Prices–The Violence of Globalization

Review: Toxin (Fiction)

Review: Wal-Mart–The High Cost of Low Price (2005)

Worth a Look: Book Reviews on Blue Collar

00 Remixed Review Lists, Complexity & Catastrophe, Congress (Failure, Reform), Corruption, Crime (Corporate), Crime (Government), Culture, Research, Democracy, Economics, Executive (Partisan Failure, Reform), Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Politics, Power (Pathologies & Utilization), Priorities, Secession & Nullification, Security (Including Immigration), Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution, Voices Lost (Indigenous, Gender, Poor, Marginalized), Worth A Look

Blue Collar

Review: Blue Collar Ministry–Facing Economic and Social Realities of Working People

Review: Deer Hunting with Jesus–Dispatches from America’s Class War

Review: Exporting America–Why Corporate Greed Is Shipping American Jobs Overseas

Review: Talking Politics with God and the Devil in Washington, D.C.

Review: The Nine Nations of North America

5 Star, Atlases & State of the World, Complexity & Catastrophe, Country/Regional, Democracy, Future, Geography & Mapping, Nature, Diet, Memetics, Design, Secession & Nullification

Nine NationsMerits Reprinting and Slight Updating, March 20, 2008

Joel Garreau

I thought I had reviewed this long ago, but evidently not. It is still very relevant to understanding and nurturing America today, and I would be very glad to see the publisher commission a slight update and then reprint this superb work.

As America strives to migrate from a disasterous and nearly fatal two-party spoils system and an Executive that is both corrupt and delusional, those who seek to lead America into a brighter future need to understand America in a new and more nuanced way. It is not about left or right. This book has been on continuing value to me as a point of reference, and I recommend it very highly in its existing state, more so if renewed.

The nine nations, each unique, are:

1. The empty quarter (which global warming will open up)
2. Quebec
3. Ecotopia (a model for the rest of us)
4. The breadbasket (which wastes water on excess foot and grows corn for fuel and cattle that is inedible and wastes more water)
5. New England
6. The Foundry (mid-Atlantic coast)
7. Dixie
8. MexAmerica
9. The Islands (of the Caribbean, where Cuban sugar cane sap could power 30-35 million cars, while Cuban health care would inform our own).

This book is one of my top eleven essential references for understanding America and the Americas. Here are the other ten:
The American Mind: An Interpretation of American Thought and Character Since the 1880's
What Kind of Nation: Thomas Jefferson, John Marshall, and the Epic Struggle to Create a United States
The Clustering of America
Losing America: Confronting a Reckless and Arrogant Presidency
The Cultural Creatives: How 50 Million People Are Changing the World
The Tao of Democracy: Using Co-Intelligence to Create a World That Works for All
Imagine: What America Could Be in the 21st Century
The Wealth of Networks: How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom
Revolutionary Wealth: How it will be created and how it will change our lives
Collective Intelligence: Creating a Prosperous World at Peace

Vote on Review

Review: The Virginia Gun Owner’s Guide – Sixth Edition

5 Star, Democracy, Secession & Nullification, Security (Including Immigration)
VA Gun
Amazon Page

Better Information Than Available Online or From Government, February 12, 2008

Alan Korwin and Steve Maniscalco

Edit of 13 Feb 08 to add “rush & crush” comment, and links including those recommended by Mr. D. in comment.

For those of us that believe in the Constitutional right of all citizens to own and bear arms (the National Guard is NOT a militia–individuals, not groups, have this inalienable Constitutional right), and who feel that the combination of random fatal violoence is accelerating, along with fatal crime, carrying a side arm makes sense. Carrying it concealed makes even more sense, to avoid attention or upsetting the soccer moms (plus weapons cannot be on school grounds except in the car).

I picked this book up today while on a trip, and finally sat down with it tonight. Here are highlights:

1) Opens with a tremendous single-page list of 13 kinds of pending laws intended to restrict citizen rights AND a great list of the harder to do more sensible things, 15 in all, that government *should* be doing. Being made aware of this pending legislation is important. The NRA does not do this good a job.

2) Landlords cannot limit rights.

3) Right to transport (unloaded in container, to include in locked baggage on airlines) is very broad, while right to carry, loaded, is very narrow.

4) Concealed or open carry cannot come within 100 fett of any site serving alcohol.

5) For natural reasons, 98% of those who own and carry a handgun are reluctant to register that fact with the government at any level.

6) Deadly Force section is the most important part of the book and essential reading for anyone unfamiliar with the term. I taught deadly force to Battlaion Landing Team 3/4 in the Fleet Marine Force, but learned even more from my Chief of Station in El Salvador. He handed me my Browning 9mm and said “Use this when you absolutely don't give a damn about being fired.” Lovely. This book sets out the three principals: Retreat, Attempt Peace, draw and fire only if lethal force against you is imminent. It emphasizes that you can protect a third person but only if they face lethal force.

7) Excellent sections on related laws (e.g. do NOT “brandish” a weapon) and federal laws.

8) Covers gun safety and child safety.

9) Ends with a list and discussion of 19 noble uses of firearms.

Lots of appendices.

A righteous worthy book, very glad to have it.


After the Virginia Tech mass murder, I realized we have become a nation of sheep. Not only do our children need to become fit, they need to learn the modern day equivalent of “duck & cover,” which I call “rush & crush.” From 6th grade on, children should have a bi-annual drill and be taught two things:

1) See a gun sound the alarm with “GUN GUN GUN”

2) Without further prompting, all those closest to the person with the “gun” should throw books chairs and then “rush and crush” while the teacher sounds the school alarm and other kids use their hidden cell phones to call 911. This will invariably limit the dead to 1 at most and wounded to 2-4 at most. This is a proven “swarm” defense across the animal kingdom, and now that we are back closer to animals than civilized human beings, our children need to learn this.

Two afterthoughts:

1) In this era of idiot lawyers where border patrolmen go to jail for shooting a drug dealer entering the country illegally, it makes sense to wipe down your rounds and police up your expended cartriges. I personally do not like the illegal “shock” rounds” because I worry about them jamming. I am very accurate and the limited edition Walther PPK is a glorious piece of engineering.

2) Situational awareness and avoidance combined with use of the cell phone to call police remains the single best defense for any citizen, armed or unarmed. If you get drunk (in which case you should not be in carrying) and get mugged, great, its Darwinian culling of the herd. Ninety nine out of one hundred times, the cell phone and retreat are the best answer.

Rage of the Random Actor: Disarming Catastrophic Acts And Restoring Lives
The Truth About Self Protection
On Combat: The Psychology and Physiology of Deadly Conflict in War and in Peace

Vote on Review

DVD: Death of a President (Widescreen)

5 Star, Crime (Government), Impeachment & Treason, Religion & Politics of Religion, Reviews (DVD Only), Secession & Nullification
DVD Death President
Amazon Page

June 24, 2007

Hend Ayoub

This is a world-class film with subtlety that may be lost on some. It is easily five stars for its blend of real-world filming of Bush and Cheney, its use of “interviews” supposedly after the fact, and its extremely subtle ending: without appearing, Dick Cheney gets to be President and passes Patiot Act III which finishes trashing the Constitution and our concept of “Liberty & Justice for All.” Nailing a passing Muslim for the crime, even after a black man committed suicide, left a note, and had a copy of the detailed schedule that could only have come from Dick Cheney or Scooter Libby, one can only ponder the near term.

I abhor the death penalty, assassination, and secession, but I also abhor war crimes and what is being done in our name, all of which give Vermont and others serious grounds for secession. It will take a quarter century to undo the damage done by Dick Cheney and his witless “decider.”

See my varied lists on serious DVDs, impeachment, Iraq after action, and evaluative books on Dick Cheney, the best two of which are listed below. In my reviews, mostly in the second, I itemize 25 high crimes and misdemeanors that Dick Cheney should be facing charges on as I write this. He has, virtually alone, destroyed the Republic.

The One Percent Doctrine: Deep Inside America's Pursuit of Its Enemies Since 9/11
Vice: Dick Cheney and the Hijacking of the American Presidency

Vote on Review
Vote on Review

Review: Human Scale

5 Star, Complexity & Resilience, Consciousness & Social IQ, Culture, Research, Democracy, Economics, Education (General), Environment (Solutions), Intelligence (Public), Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Secession & Nullification, Voices Lost (Indigenous, Gender, Poor, Marginalized)
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be Re-Issued, a Seminal Publication Relevant to Governance
October 3, 2006
Kirkpatrick Sale

I am finding that books written in the 1970's and 1980's a making a comeback and people realize that certain of those authors were a quarter century ahead of their times. Richard Falk is one, Kirkpatrick Sale is the other. This book could usefully be read with Leopold Kohr's “The Breakdown of Nations,” Joel Garreau's “Nine Nations of North America,” and Philip Alcott's “The Health of Nations,” on why sovereignty and the Treaty of Westphalia should be overturned in favor of more localized governance with more universal rights and protections.

The bottom line in this book is crytal clear half-way through the book: at a specific point of scale, variable depending on natural resources, technical and cultural sophistication, etc, an individual's share of earned income goes MORE toward “power” goods and services of common concrn than to their own benefit. It is at this point that “the state” has outgrown its utility and becomes a burden on the individual taxpayer.

It merits comment in this context that there are 27 seccessionist movements in the United States of America, and at least 3 in Canada. As we look at the idiocy of the elective war on Iraq, and the very real prospect that the German Pope has cut a neo-fascist deal with the Karl Roves and Otto Reichs of this world–all descendants of Nazi war criminals admitted to the US under espionage cover, we have to contemplate the possibility that our big states are *out of control* and need to be chopped back to more “human scale.” This is a Nobel Prize kind of book, quite extraordinary.

Vote on Review

Review: Rage of the Random Actor

5 Star, Congress (Failure, Reform), Corruption, Crime (Government), Culture, Research, Democracy, Economics, Education (General), Executive (Partisan Failure, Reform), Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Philosophy, Politics, Power (Pathologies & Utilization), Secession & Nullification, Threats (Emerging & Perennial), Truth & Reconciliation, Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution, Voices Lost (Indigenous, Gender, Poor, Marginalized)
Amazon Page
Amazon Page

5.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary, Compelling, Urgently Applicable to All

October 19, 2005

Dan Korem

I am utterly astonished to not see this book at the top of the charts and being absorbed by every school principal, every small town mayor, every police chief, and every counter-terrorism expert. This book is extraordinary, it is compelling, and it is utterly and urgently applicable to every single person who wishes to “defuse” potentially deadly “random actors.”

Although it is a thick book packed with details, you do not have the read the whole thing to extract value. Suffice to say that armed with this book, communities and organizations will have all they need to know to achieve early warning of potentially threatening “random actors.”

This is not a book full of psycho-babble. If anything, it is solidly grounded in practical case studies going back twenty years, and I for one, as a 30-year veteran intelligence professional, including clandestine service with constant exposure to bad boys and girls, find the book credible, useful, and easy to understand.

The bottom line, without seeking to simplify the book, is avoid de-personalization, prevent bullying, open up to individuals and empower them, and above all, be alert for any sense that they see teachers or other authority figures as “CONTROLLING” and rules as “INAPPLICABLE.”

The author's finding that terrorism is a rich kid's game, and that most US-based random actors will come from upper middle class families in small towns, are consistent with my own research and practical experience with revolutionaries.

Sadly, the underlying theme across the book is that of societal collapse. The major institutions, from school to church to sports to social clubs are all degenerating and failing to provide the inclusiveness and alternatives to boredom and alienation that they once represented. The threat of “random actors” imposing catastrophic fatal acts on their communities is very real.

This book is an important reference work, and one that I would recommend be bought in bulk, and discussed in a structured manner by every school staff and every local police department…and of course by parents!

Vote on Review
Vote on Review